Kentucky Debates Easing Felony Disenfranchisement Laws

Advocates anticipate victory.

By Carla Murphy Feb 21, 2014

More than one in five of black residents of voting age in Kentucky cannot vote. The state ranks among the harshest in the country for felony disenfranchisement but according to Stateline, that could change this election year. With a compromise assist from Republican Sen. Rand Paul, Kentucky could join states like Delaware and more than two dozen others in easing voting restrictions. But the battle is far from over. Some states like South Dakota have actually tightened restrictions in recent years. Nearly six million people, according to The Sentencing Project, cannot vote due to felony disenfranchisement laws. More than seven percent are African-American.

Check out Stateline’s map to see where your state stands compared to the rest of the country on felony disenfranchisement and policies by state. Is your state’s record better or worse than you expected?